Dayton by Stevie J. Cole & L.P. Lovell

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn




Zepp Hunt wasn’t the king of Dayton high school. He was the top of the food chain. And I was next in line to be dragged into the lion’s den. At least that’s what he thought…

Good girls wanted to tame him. Bad girls want to be tainted by him. Everyone bowed down to him. And me?

I hated Zeppelin Hunt with every fiber of my being.

Which was why I stayed away from the arrogant bad boy with tattoos and a rap sheet.

Until I couldn’t.

Until we traded favors, and I owed him three months of my life. I never thought I would end up in his bed, and when I did, I had to remind myself that he hated me as much as I hated him.

Until I didn’t.

Zepp Hunt was no prince, and I absolutely refused to be his damsel in distress…


Genre/ Tropes: Hate-To-Love, Close Proximity, Instant Attraction, Secret Crush

TW: Attempted Sexual Assault, Drug Use, Domestic Violence, Child Abuse, Violence 

I went into this book with the assumption it was just another hate-to-love teen romance. Little did I know it was the start of a new obsession! 😍 Dayton is the type of harsh reality I only ever see in either films and tv, or on the news— rundown neighbourhoods, seedy environments, high crime rated streets, and those who unfortunately live in the thick of it.

Yes, it’s angsty and tragic, but rightfully so. Yet, I found it thoroughly engaging and at times unpredictable. This book sets up the world-building and overall gritty tone of the book, and the rest of the series for that matter. It’s contemporary with a handful of dark elements included. The cast of characters introduced immediately had me curious to know more. Zepp and Monroe couldn’t have been a more perfectly suited pairing. The zingy pull-and-push relationship brewing between them was gripping to say the least. The constant game-playing and sexual banter was highly entertaining, but there was also a nice counterbalance of sincerity, understanding, and protectiveness in between.

You see a gradual progression in their character growth as the two unexpectedly form an undeniable bond. I was intrigued by the premise, and I’m happy to say the storytelling was well-executed. I didn’t even mind the slow burn romance. My only hang-up is the ending was a little on the abrupt side and wasn’t as in-depth in details as the rest of the book. But it’s still a gripping read and an excellent start to the series.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐




He was the reprobate king of Dayton high. I was the bitter princess cast out of my kingdom. And we were at war.

It started off with a lie, and a one-night stand gone terribly wrong. Although I knew nothing good would come from my encounter with Bellamy West, the small town’s gorgeous bad boy, I didn’t expect him to throw jet fuel onto the already flaming wreckage of my life. Then step back with a sexy smirk on his face to watch me burn.
And burn I did…

He got me fired.
I got him arrested.
We were enemies until we weren’t. Until one touch went too far, and I found myself craving each dirty word. Every filthy promise.
Bellamy West was no good, and I wanted to be bad.

Screw falling for Prince Charming, I wrote my love story with the villain.
And for that, I paid..


Genre/ Tropes: Opposite Sides Of The Tracks, One Night Stand, Close Proximity, Forbidden Romance

TW: Drug Use, Violence, Bullying

This next book was a little more on the light-hearted, playful side. There’s still some saddening developments but for the most part Bellamy and Drew have this highly amusing, super adorable relationship. It’s an opposite sides of the tracks love affair that had me giggling all throughout. 🤭 They’re another likable pair of characters, with Drew being a cute and confident heroine with bratty tendencies, and Bellamy surprisingly being one of the sweeter, more adult, more thoughtful heroes from the series, and it has a lot to do with his backstory.

The distinct differences between Bellamy and Drew doesn’t hold them back from pursuing one another—and when it looks like all things are stacked against them, they always manage to find a way around it. If charming, protective, loyal heroes tickle your fancy, I think you’ll find Bellamy quite the sweetheart.😉 He went from a secondary character to the main man of Dayton in this book and he filled the role with his own swoon-worthy finesse.

A great addition that essentially left me happy sighing, but it’s another story in the series with another abrupt ending— this one slightly more hasty than the last in resolving issues before it concluded. Although there was an epilogue, I was left wondering about certain matters. I wish this story was longer, but nevertheless still a worthwhile read!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐




To everyone in Dayton, Hendrix Hunt was the tattooed bad boy, the bully, the player. Guys hated and feared him. Girls wanted to tame him. And I just wished I could forget him.

Two years ago, Hendrix was my world. Then the taint of Dayton ruined everything, breaking us both with secrets and lies. I destroyed him and now he wants to destroy me…

They say love is patient, that love is kind, but when love is broken it becomes filled with jealousy and revenge.

Hendrix Hunt was no Romeo. But unfortunately, just like Juliet, I was in love with my enemy.


Genre/ Tropes: Friends-To-Lovers, Second Chance Romance, Love–Hate–Love, Close Proximity

TW: Sexual Assault, Child Abuse, Drug Use, Abortion, Violence  

I’ve read countless romance books with “alpha-holes” and “man-whoring” leading men… but after having read these books, Hendrix takes top spot, hands down! Lol. In saying that, never in a million years could I have predicted (after all he has said and done in the past two books) that Hendrix and his story would end up becoming my favourite! 🤯😄

I was wholly captivated by Hendrix and Lola’s relationship and their entire backstory right from the opening scene. Hendrix has a distinct image he presents to everyone but this book gave amazing insight to another side of him that ultimately made me see him in a different (and absolutely lovable) light.

It’s well-paced storytelling, and jam-packed full of developments between Lola and Hendrix. Their history is well-developed alongside a deep sense of genuineness to their relationship that was effortlessly convincing. There’s air of tension and angst throughout that really drives home the heartbreak that both these leading characters are constantly experiencing. I love the amount of heart and emotion their story possessed— it’s one of the main reasons as to why I became so invested in seeing their HEA.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½


I’m not even the slightest bit embarrassed to admit I got hooked on this series relatively quickly. I wasn’t even halfway through No Prince before I knew I needed to grab the other books in the series. Each book’s storyline has some repetitive formulas but I didn’t mind it one bit. There’s still differences within each of the couples and their developments that made each story their own.

Although it’s set in a high school backdrop, these books are most certainly NA romance with a ton of raunchy sexual content for targeted audiences 18+ only. The world-building is one I haven’t come across in a lot of contemporary romance reads and immediately had me curious. The struggle is real with what these cast of characters go through and I was invested in each and every one of their lives from beginning to end.

I’ve been an avid fan of Lovell’s mafia romances and wanted to check out the rest of her backlist of books. Not only has the Dayton series introduced me to Lovell’s style of contemporary romance writing, but it also introduced new-to-me author Stevie J. Cole.

I’m late to the Dayton series party, and I’m not sure if No Romeo is officially the last book, but I do hope Wolf gets one of his very own. Although Hendrix is a loud, very memorable, one of kind character, Wolf was the very first Dayton “bad boy” introduced in No Prince (besides Zepp) that caught my eye.

Once I started this series I could not NOT binge-read them back to back. Safe to say they’ve become an addiction! 😁 They all have crude but laugh-out-loud humour, swoon-worthy romantic elements, and strong, genuine friendships that made them massive page-turners. There’s a real sense of survival, desperation, and a struggle with poverty with these characters that added another layer to each of their narratives. These books won’t be for everyone, but I highly recommend you give them a try. It’s an interconnected series but each is a standalone novel.



Want More High School Angst?

🎒 Black Mountain Academy

Pretty When She Cries by A. Zavarelli
Mr. Heartbreaker by Jordan Marie
Hate Me by A. Jade


🔥 Hellfire Club


Wicked Idol by Becker Gray
Callous Prince by Becker Gray
Brutal Blueblood by Becker Gray
Ruined Sinner by Becker Gray
Sweet Devil by Becker Gray


Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo


Princess Claimed by Alison Aimes

⚠ This review contains a minor teaser!

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



What happens when a bad boy alien trying to go good meets a good girl omega looking to be bad?

He’s shuttle grease and heavy lifting. She’s lace, luxury, and glittering jewels.
He’s grumpy and closed off. She’s got a smile that could unite kingdoms.
He’s a scarred, exiled convict. She’s a dainty angel with the air of a princess.
They’re not just worlds apart. They’re separated by galaxies, circumstances, and expectations.
But when she literally falls from the sky into his arms and their explosive chemistry erupts, he’s only got one objective… convincing her they’re perfect for each other.

But first, he’ll have to get her to remember who she is and why there are men trying to kill her.

Princess Claimed is a scorching novella in the Ruthless Warlords series. It takes places in the same universe as the rest of the series and features characters from the Forbidden zone, but can be read as a stand-alone. It’s a hot sweet Omegaverse with fated mates, Alpha steaminess, and opposites-attract fun. It will initially be published in the Claimed Among the Stars Anthology.



“Sometimes the bad guy really does have to play the hero.”


What a spunky, character-driven novella from the Ruthless Warlords series! It might be short and sweet, but it’s also undoubtedly entertaining with plenty of twists and turns. For a short story, Aimes has managed to pack plenty of depth not just within the storyline, but with Ariana and Pavel’s budding romance.

There’s an instant attraction and connection with these two characters but in no way did it come across as superficial. Although there’s crazy-fast developments throughout, they’re constantly getting to know one another and ironing out kinks in their relationship. As the story progresses, it becomes obvious there’s more between these two besides lust.

I thought it had a great balance of raunchy romance, a little light-hearted humour, and some action and suspense within an epic intergalactic backdrop. It reads easily as a standalone novel but I highly recommend you get onto the Ruthless Warlords series and see where the world-building all started. It’s interconnected, with an occasional mention or appearance of characters from previous books in the series. This particular story takes place in the Forbidden Zone, which in my opinion is one of the most intriguing settings within this world because it seems like it has endless amounts of possibilities for expansion, or for more characters to be introduced, and this novella proves it! 😊 The secondary characters had caught my attention just as much as its protagonists, and I have my fingers crossed we’ll run into them again.

Sometimes you just need a romance read where you know the characters are destined for one another, and this love story soothed that craving. It’s a little bit forbidden love, a little opposite-sides-of-the-tracks, mixed with a little Bonnie and Clyde-ish vibes.

Told from third person, dual points of view, Ariana and Pavel have such an adorable dynamic that keeps you glued to the pages. I found them equally lovable individuals, with Pavel having just the right amount of protective, alpha-male-tendencies about him, and Ariana despite her predicament hasn’t lost her daring personality and magical omega traits. Together, they make one ballsy team, effortlessly working side by side!

To top it all off, the epilogue was the cherry on top of what was already a swoon-worthy read, adding the ultimate HEA for these two characters. It’s smile-inducing and leaves you with such happy contentment knowing what lies in their future.

This is the second novella within this series by Aimes and just as spicy and thrilling as the full-length novels. It contains vivid little backstories for each leading character that elevates the storytelling and provides more context to their circumstances.

Please note, it does include sensitive subject matters that may be triggering for some readers such as harassment, attempted sexual assault, and brutal violence that has resulted in PTSD. Intended for readers 18+ only.

Overall, it’s an amazing, quick romance read with nice fluidity to the narrative that’s not to be missed! Great for readers who enjoy sci-fi/ alien romance and/or a fan of the Omegaverse romance sub-genre.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you Alison Aimes for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 🧡

🔔 Interested in reading Princess Claimed? Grab your copy here: Universal Link


More from the Ruthless Warlords!

Book One: Ruthless King (Review Coming Soon)
Novella: Forbidden Flame (Review Coming Soon)
Book Two: Savage Prince by Alison Aimes
Book Three: Broken Heir by Alison Aimes


Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo


Stolen By A Sinner by Michelle Heard

⚠ This book contain minor teasers! 

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



Cinderella said to be kind, have courage, and always believe in a little magic.

She’s wrong.

To survive in my world, you have to be dead inside, be on guard at all times, and never dream of the impossible.

You never dream of anything because you don’t just get to stop working for the Polish mafia.

But you can be stolen from them.

Well, kind of.

When Gabriel Demir, head of the Turkish mafia, attacks my boss, I’m caught in the crossfire.

I’m taken captive, interrogated, and soon find myself in the position of maid again. Only this time, it’s for the Turkish instead of Polish.

This time it’s for a dangerously attractive man and not the insane one I’ve known all my life.

This time I find myself fantasizing about my boss instead of dreaming of ways to escape.

This time I’m not threatened with pain and death but with pleasure.

But can I step out of the maid’s uniform and into a ballgown?

Do I dare cross that line just for a moment in the spotlight?



“He might not be my prince, but he’s definitely my savior.”


I am in love with Stolen By A Sinner! 👏👏👏 We’re only halfway through this series and it’s already phenomenal, and the two previous books have been addictive as hell… but this one just hits a little differently— it’s extra special.

Everything was on point, from the initial premise, to the expectations, to the overall execution of the storytelling! It may sound simple enough for a book to coincide with its synopsis but there’s plenty of cases where it ends up becoming a bit of a hit and miss, and you’re left with a story that headed in a completely unsuspecting direction. Heard had undertaken a Cinderella tale set in a modern Mafia world and ended up not only delivering but surpassing all expectations. I honestly cannot stopping re-reading it. The stories, the developments, and ugh… the characters have all but consumed my thoughts, and I don’t see it fading away anytime soon.

Right from the very beginning there’s already a vivid sense of uneasiness and fear as Lara takes us into her depressing, isolated world. Although it was still early days into the story, it was already such a pivotal period of Lara’s personal story, as it provides both an understanding of her circumstances, and ultimately the backstory to the main narrative between Gabriel and herself.

Such a winning pair of leading characters that complement each other so well. Gabriel is the next Mafioso in the series to share his story and believe me when I say he’ll leave his mark on your heart, but Lara’s character growth is utterly moving, to say the least. She’s very much the focal point, with the majority of the storyline revolving around her. With her youth, lack of life experiences and relationships, she’d been severely conditioned to accept her standing on top of constantly keeping her wits about her.

There’s nothing arrogant about Gabriel’s strength and authority, yet he’s undoubtedly a powerful, intimidating-as-hell hero who willingly (and effortlessly) slipped into a solid supporting role for his heroine. I found it to be such an intriguing dynamic getting to witness such a gradual, genuine relationship form between that two through patience, compassion, and acceptance. As the story progressed you can literally see trust building, that made their entire relationship all the more heart-warming and realistic as it evolved.

It’s a pretty harsh and emotional read. I’d lost count of how many times I either welled-up with tears or downright blubbered. You can’t help but be heartbroken for Lara and all that she’s endured. It’s such savagery and a deep sense of loneliness. It touches on mental health and wellbeing, and reflects on multiple societal and economic issues. Don’t take Heard’s warning of this book lightly, as it contains serious triggers and intended for readers 18+ only.

But in saying that, for readers who have no issues with sensitive subject matter, I cannot recommend this book enough. It’s my first ever Turkish Mafia romance, but what also attracted me to the story was the Cinderella-themed synopsis. So, if you enjoy any of the following romance sub-genres and tropes, I really think this one will be to your liking! 😊

“If you want me to be your prince, I’ll be your fucking prince, baby.”

  • Modern-Day Fairy tale
  • Age-Gap Romance
  • Captive Romance
  • Opposite sides of the tracks
  • Workplace Romance
  • Cross-Cultural/ Interracial Characters
  • Romantic Suspense
  • Dark Mafia Romance
  • Slow-Burn Romance
  • Enemies-to-Lovers

There’s such a well-written cast of characters included that seriously elevated this book to heavenly status! I haven’t loved an entire group of people (albeit, fictional) in a very long time. This is the type of support system dreams are made of. They brought about friendship, strength, loyalty, and also displayed a deep contrast between Lara’s and Gabriel’s worlds. And if that wasn’t enough, the additional light-heartedness and much needed (but surprising) comic-relief was the cherry on top of an epic fairy tale romance story!

What I’ve quickly discovered with each book in this series is that I really enjoy (and look forward to) getting to learn another language. It may just be a few words but the way Heard has incorporated diversity and culture into these books added another layer to the world-building and almost transports its audience to new travel destinations. It also makes her characters and their world a lot more fleshed out.

Stolen By A Sinner is journey worth experiencing for yourself. It’s an emotional rollercoaster— you’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll swoon, and then you’ll cry some more. It’s a standalone novel in The Sinners Series but it’s a complete story—epilogue and all!

It’s easily one of my favourite reads of 2022!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you Michelle Heard and Candi Kane PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 🧡

🔔 Interested in reading Stolen By A Sinner? Grab your copy here: Amazon US  |  Amazon UK  |  Amazon AU  |  Amazon CA


Start the Sinners Series!

Book One: Taken By A Sinner by Michelle Heard
Book Two: Owned By A Sinner by Michelle Heard


Read the Saints Series!

Book 1-4: The Saints Series by Michelle Heard
Book Five: Tears Of Salvation by Michelle Heard


Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo


Best Kept Secret by Skye Warren

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



The secrets haunting Beau Rochester come alive.

He doesn’t deserve happiness, but he holds it in his hands. A woman he loves. A child. The past threatens to rip them away. He risks losing them forever.

Jane Mendoza is determined to protect the people she loves from every threat–the mysterious arsonist, the corrupt police force. The darkest danger comes from a place she never expects.

She risks more than her newfound family. She risks her life.



“A responsible boss doesn’t get involved with the nanny.”


Whilst the first two books in the trilogy had an air of suspense and secrecy, I was a little taken aback to find this third and final book was surrounded in such a depressing tone. It’s hard not to be affected by it because Jane, Beau, and the secondary characters all seemed to be in such gloomy moods for the majority of the book.

I found the pace of the storytelling a little slower in comparison to the first two from this trilogy. Although this part of the story is told from multiple POVs, so there’s lots of input and perspectives from different characters regarding the situation they found themselves in.

The first half of the overall story was very much inspired by the classic tale, Jane Eyre, but Warren has given the final leg of Jane’s and Beau’s story her own.

The angst between Jane and Beau is still very much present— if anything it’s amped up further now that their relationship has evolved from their initial guardian/nanny fling. I found their relationship to be drama-filled, tentative, and complex. If you’re looking for a swoon-worthy romance with tons off heat leaping off the pages, you won’t find it with Jane and Beau. There was initial sexual chemistry and zing in the first two books, but I found as the drama intensified, the sizzling romance became minimal. The push-and-pull between them is almost painstakingly angsty, but it can’t be denied that they do have a desperate need for one another.

Other than the relationship between the protagonists, there’s some interesting secondary plotlines occurring in the background that adds an extra element to the story.

As I mentioned earlier there’s a somberness to this book that ultimately became a big decisive factor in how I felt about it as a whole. You definitely have to be in a particular mindset to read a romance story that’s heavy on tragedy and heartbreak, and be prepared for it to seep into your own emotions. I easily got affected by Jane’s insecurities, Beau’s indecisiveness, and especially Noah’s battered heart. He surprisingly became the character in this book that I became the most emotionally invested in, just because his frustration and opinions when it came to Jane and her actions I felt were just. I most certainly felt bad for the guy.

There’s some character growth since Private Property, but I would’ve liked to have seen more in-depth development. The world-building was created and set from the first book but didn’t really expand any further from the small cast of characters and the town they reside in.

Overall, I thought it was decent conclusion. I admit it’s my least favourite book from the trilogy, but after having read and gotten sucked into Jane’s and Beau’s world, I was curious to see how it will all end. If you like Jane Eyre and retellings, I recommend you add this story to your TBR. It’s a contemporary take on a classic with an age-gap romance trope. With the differences in social standings, lifestyles, and familial backgrounds, Jane and Beau are the epitome of “opposite sides of the tracks” that unexpectedly collided together and sparked life-altering moments. It’s a dark billionaire romance; a Cinderella story of sorts, with a smidge of suspense and foreboding. These characters will have you second-guessing everything and keep you on your toes.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐½


Thank you Skye Warren and Valentine PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💜

🔔 Interested in reading Best Kept Secret? Grab your copy here: Amazon  |  Apple Books  |  Nook  |  Kobo  |  Google Play


🗝 Reviews for The Rochester Trilogy!

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

Book One | Private Property by Skye Warren

Book Two | Strict Confidence by Skye Warren


Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo